Crafty DIY: Making a Best Seller on Etsy

Crafty DIY: Making a Best Seller on Etsy

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Importance of Batch Production
  3. Selecting the Right Wood for Darning Mushrooms
  4. Shaping the Heads of Darning Mushrooms
  5. Collaboration and Product Development
  6. Turning the Stems of Darning Mushrooms
  7. Final Sanding and Finishing
  8. Attaching the Heads to the Stems
  9. Choosing the Right Finish
  10. Listing and Selling on Etsy
  11. Conclusion


Welcome to my workshop! In this article, I will take you through the process of making darning mushrooms. These functional pieces are used to repair knitted items and can be a great addition to any knitting enthusiast's toolkit. From selecting the right wood to finishing and selling the final product, I will guide you step by step in creating these beautiful and practical items.

The Importance of Batch Production

One of the key aspects of creating darning mushrooms is batch production. While Etsy is a popular platform for selling handmade items, it's not ideal for one-off products. By creating a batch of darning mushrooms, you can streamline the production process and ensure a consistent supply for your customers. This also allows you to focus on both wholesale orders and individual sales on Etsy.

Selecting the Right Wood for Darning Mushrooms

When it comes to selecting the wood for darning mushrooms, two types are commonly used: Oak for the head and Sycamore for the stand. Oak provides a clear grain that can be sanded smooth, preventing any snags on the item being darned. Sycamore, on the other hand, is a wood that behaves similar to Maple and offers a nice turning experience. Both woods are native and sustainable, making them an eco-friendly choice.

Shaping the Heads of Darning Mushrooms

To start the process, a template is used to mark out the Oak for the heads. A larger hole is drilled for the lathe chuck to grip, while a smaller hole is tagged as the mortise for the stem to attach. The Oak is then taken to the bandsaw to roughly cut out the blank. Using both HSS and carbide tools, the heads are shaped to ensure consistency across the batch. The final shape includes a flat surface on top, which makes it easier to use when repairing knitted items.

Collaboration and Product Development

The shape and functionality of the darning mushrooms were developed in collaboration with a knitting designer and retailer. By working closely with experts and people who would actually use the product, prototypes were created and tested until the perfect design was achieved. This collaboration ensures that the darning mushrooms not only look beautiful but also perform their intended function effectively.

Turning the Stems of Darning Mushrooms

The stems of the darning mushrooms are made from Sycamore wood. A parting tool is used to define the shoulder where the stem meets the head, followed by a square carbide tool to reduce the size of the tenon on the end of the stem. Shaping and sanding the stem is done carefully to ensure a comfortable grip while using the darning mushroom. The diameter of the tenon is checked using calipers to ensure a proper fit with the head.

Final Sanding and Finishing

Once the shaping is complete, the darning mushrooms undergo sanding to achieve a smooth finish. Starting with lower grit sandpaper, such as 80, the piece is sanded incrementally with higher grits, up to 600. Care is taken not to change the shape of the darning mushroom during the sanding process. Sanding mesh or sandpaper can be used, depending on availability. This meticulous sanding ensures that the darning mushrooms are comfortable to handle and won't snag any knitted items.

Attaching the Heads to the Stems

To join the heads and stems of the darning mushrooms, medium CA glue is used. The grain alignment is carefully checked to ensure a visually appealing result. An accelerant spray is used to speed up the setting time of the glue, allowing for a quick and secure bond. This step requires precision and attention to detail, as there is only one chance to get it right.

Choosing the Right Finish

The finish applied to the darning mushrooms is an important factor. After testing various options, a blend of mineral oil and beeswax was chosen for its quality and ease of preparation. This homemade finish adds a luxurious touch to the darning mushrooms, enhancing their appearance while also protecting the wood.

Listing and Selling on Etsy

Once the darning mushrooms are complete, they can be listed on Etsy for sale. Pricing and shipping information are carefully set, taking into account the production costs and market demand. Promoting the darning mushrooms through social media posts can help generate interest and boost sales on the platform.


In conclusion, crafting darning mushrooms is a rewarding process that combines functionality and aesthetics. By following the step-by-step guide outlined in this article, you can create high-quality darning mushrooms that will be appreciated by knitting enthusiasts. Whether you choose to sell them wholesale or through platforms like Etsy, these handmade items are sure to find a place in the hearts and toolkits of knitters everywhere.

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